Ohio Water Resources Council

The Ohio Water Resources Council (OWRC) was designed as a forum for policy development, collaboration and coordination among state agencies, and strategic direction with respect to state water resource programs. The application of knowledge and expertise to safeguard and manage Ohio’s water resources requires data and other information. These are produced and compiled by various government and non-government agencies. The continued collection of long-term water resources data, effective management of the data and easy access to data and information have been identified as a strategic issue.

Water resources data and information are critical to informed decision making by citizens, public officials, regulators, consultants, business and industry representatives. The result of not addressing this strategic need is increased cost, increased uncertainty and less than optimal decision making. For example, the loss of long-term stream gauges impacts the accuracy of flood frequency data that can cause underestimation or overestimation of flood risk. Either case can cost significantly in terms of dollars and at times the loss of life.

Originally formed on a temporary basis as an outgrowth of the 1993 Governor’s Blue Ribbon Task Force on Water Resources, the OWRC was designed as a forum for policy development, collaboration and coordination among state agencies, and strategic direction with respect to state water resource programs.

Legislation signed on July 1, 2001 permanently established the OWRC in state law. This new law redefined the Council’s roles and responsibilities in order to strengthen its leadership and provide for greater representation by stakeholder groups.

The new OWRC membership is comprised of an Executive Assistant to the governor and the heads of nine state agencies: the Ohio departments of Agriculture, Development, Health, Natural Resources and Transportation; the Ohio Environmental Protection Agency; Ohio Public Works Commission; Ohio Water Development Authority; and Public Utilities Commission of Ohio.

Two groups assist the OWRC in pursuing its goals. The State Agency Coordinating Group, consisting of staff from the member agencies and the Executive Director of the Ohio Lake Erie Commission, serves Council members in support and research roles. The Advisory Group, including 20 members appointed by the OWRC and eight technical members representing a variety of stakeholder groups, advise the Council and participate in work groups to develop recommendations on water resource issues.

Member Agencies

Agency Directors

State Agency Coordinating Group

Public Advisory Group

Technical Support Group

2017 Meeting Schedule

2016 Meeting Schedule** Type of Meeting Meeting Minutes
February 8, 2017 from 9-11:00 a.m. State Agency Coordinating Group (SACG)
May 10, 2017 from 9-11:30 a.m. SACG
August 9, 2017 from 9-11:00 a.m. SACG
November at the WMAO Conference (date and location TBD) SACG
     

2016 Meeting Schedule

2016 Meeting Schedule** Type of Meeting Meeting Minutes
January 20, 2016 from 9-11:30 a.m. State Agency Coordinating Group (SACG) 1-20-16 Minutes
March 16, 2016 from 9-11:30 a.m. SACG 3-16-16 Minutes
May 18, 2016 from 9-11:30 a.m. SACG 5-18-16 Minutes
July 20, 2016 from 9-11:00 a.m. SACG Cancelled
September 21, 2016 from 9-11:30 a.m. SACG 9-21-16 Minutes
November 16, 2016 from 9-11:30 a.m. SACG
     

2015 Meeting Schedule

2015 Meeting Schedule** Type of Meeting Meeting Minutes
January 21, 2015 from 9-11:30 a.m. State Agency Coordinating Group (SACG) 1-21-15 Minutes
March 18, 2015 from 9-11:30 a.m. SACG 3-18-15 Minutes
March 31, 2015 from 2:30-4:30 p.m. OWRC 3-31-15 Minutes
May 20, 2015 from 9-11:30 a.m. SACG 5-20-15 Minutes
July 15, 2015 from 9-11:30 a.m. SACG 7-15-15 Minutes
September 16, 2015 from 9-11:30 a.m. SACG 9-16-15 Minutes
November 18, 2015 from 9-11:30 a.m.
*(please note the time and location change below)
SACG 11-18-15 Minutes
     
*Nov. 18 - DoubleTree Worthington, located at 175 Hutchinson Ave, Columbus, OH 43235 from 1-3:30 p.m..

2014 Meeting Schedule

2014 Meeting Schedule** Type of Meeting Meeting Minutes
January 15, 2014 from 9-11:30 a.m. State Agency Coordinating Group (SACG) 1-15-14 Minutes
March 19, 2014 from 9-11:30 a.m. SACG 3-19-14 Minutes
May 21, 2014 from 9-11:30 a.m. SACG 5-21-14 Minutes
July 16, 2014 from 9-11:30 a.m. SACG 7-16-14 Minutes
September 17, 2014 from 9-11:30 a.m. SACG 9-17-14 Minutes
November 19, 2014 from 9-11:30 a.m. SACG 11-19-14 Minutes
     

2013 Meeting Schedule

2013 Meeting Schedule* Type of Meeting Meeting Minutes
January 16, 2013 @ 8:45 a.m. State Agency Coordinating Group (SACG) 1-16-13 Minutes
February 20, 2013 @ 1 p.m. OWRC Council 2-20-13 Minutes
March 20, 2013 @ 1:30 p.m. SACG 3-20-13 Minutes
April TBD Public Advisory Group  
May 15, 2013 @ 8:45 a.m. SACG 5-15-13 Minutes
July 17, 2013 @ 8:45 a.m. SACG 7-17-13 Minutes
September 18, 2013 @ 8:45 a.m. SACG 9-18-13 Minutes
October 2, 2013 @ 10:00 a.m. Public Advisory Group 10-2-13 Minutes
November 20, 2013 @ 8:45 a.m. SACG 11-20-13 Minutes
     

2012 Meeting Schedule

2012 Meeting Schedule* Type of Meeting Meeting Minutes
January 18, 2012 @ 8:45 a.m. State Agency Coordinating Group (SACG) 1-18-12 Minutes
February 21, 2012 @ 1 p.m. OWRC Council 2-21-12 Minutes
March 21, 2012 @ 2 p.m. SACG  Cancelled
May 16, 2012 @ 8:45 a.m. SACG 5-16-12 Minutes
May 23, 2012 @ 10 a.m. - 2 p.m. Public Advisory Group Kickoff 5-23-12 Minutes
July 11, 2012 @ 8:45 a.m. SACG 7-11-12 Minutes
September 19, 2012 @ 8:45 a.m. SACG 9-19-12 Minutes
October 17, 2012 @ 10 a.m. - 2 p.m. Public Advisory Group 10-17-12 Minutes
November 20, 2012 @ 8:45 a.m. SACG 11-20-12 Minutes
     

Note* - All SACG meetings are currently scheduled to be held at the Ohio Water Development Authority’s offices, located at 480 S. High St., Columbus, OH 43215. The OWRC Council Meeting was held at the offices of Ohio EPA located at 50 W. Town Street, Columbus, Ohio 43215.

Note** - OWRC meetings are currently scheduled to be held at the Ohio Water Development Authority’s offices, located at 480 S. High St., Columbus, OH 43215.

The State Agency Coordinating Group (SACG) undertakes specific projects in support of seven water-related topics identified in the Strategic Plan. Projects cover a variety of areas such as public education, training opportunities, data collection and policy recommendations.

Outreach and Other Coordination Efforts

Ohio Balanced Growth Program

In April of 2004 the Ohio Lake Erie Commission (OLEC) adopted the Balanced Growth Blue Ribbon Task Force recommendations for a voluntary, incentive-based program to achieve balanced growth in the Lake Erie Watershed. A series of pilot planning partnerships were funded in 2006 and a best local land use practices training program was launched the same year. The success of this initiative prompted the OWRC to move forward with statewide implementation of the program starting in the summer of 2009. In December 2011, the statewide Balanced Growth Strategy was endorsed by the Ohio Lake Erie Commission and in February 2012 the statewide Balanced Growth Strategy was endorsed by the OWRC Council. Please visit the Ohio Balanced Growth Program website for more information about the program.

Ohio's State Coordinating Committee on Ground Water (Ohio SCCGW)

The SCCGW was created in 1992, to promote and guide the implementation of a statewide coordinated, comprehensive and effective ground water protection and management program. Ohio's SCCGW is a subcommittee of the Ohio Water Resources Council, and is composed of ground water technical or management staff from seven state agencies, two federal agencies, and The Ohio State University Extension office. Visit the SCCGW website for more information.

Ohio's Water Resource Monitoring Workgroup (WRMW)

The Water Resource Monitoring Workgroup was created in 2004 to promote the effective collection, interpretation and dissemination of water resource and other environmental data necessary to provide for comprehensive water resource management. This workgroup meets annually, and includes over 10 federal, state and local entities that have a regional or statewide network of monitoring sites for either surface water or ground water. USGS Ohio Water Science Center has been taking the lead in organizing the meetings.

Ohio's Water Quality Monitoring Steering Committee (WQMSC)

The Water Quality Monitoring Steering Committee was created in 2012 to promote and implement a plan to enhance the effectiveness and use of surface and ground water quality data collected in Ohio. It is a subset of the larger WRMW and is composed of ground water and surface water technical or management staff from four state agencies (Agriculture, Health, Transportation, and Environmental Protection), and USGS. Ohio EPA Division of Surface Water is the designated lead for the committee.

Guidance Documents and Publications

Geothermal Heating and Cooling Systems

Geothermal heating and cooling uses the relatively constant temperature of the earth to heat and cool homes and businesses with 40% to 70% less energy than conventional systems. In winter, the relative warmth from the ground or ground water is transferred to the building, and in summer the process is reversed and the heat of the building is transferred to the earth or ground water. For more information on this topic, read the associated guidance, Recommendations for Geothermal Heating and Cooling Systems - Guidance for Protecting Ohio’s Water Resources or visit the Ohio's State Coordinating Committee on Ground Water website.

Salt Storage

 

Many Ohio organizations, including highway agencies, counties, cities, townships, distributors, and snow removal companies, stockpile salt to be spread on roads, walkways, and parking lots during the winter months to melt snow and ice. This storage is beneficial and necessary to ensure the safety and mobility of Ohio citizens, as well as the unimpeded mobility of goods and services. However if not stored properly, the salt can contaminate water resources, and the owner or operator can be held liable for the damages. The threat from salt storage is potentially much greater than the threat from application to roads. This document has been developed to provide guidance on salt storage practices that will help prevent the contamination of ground water and surface water.

For More Information

Brian Hall
OWRC - State Agency Coordinating Group Leader
Ohio EPA, Lazarus Gov. Center
PO Box 1049
Columbus, OH 43216-1049
Email Brian
(614) 644-2033 Phone
(614) 644-2745 Fax